Bhutan's Waste Recycling Plant - Greener Way Creates Value Out Of Plastic Waste

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Through the modification of plastic waste by using better recycling strategies, the firm produces plastic poles for socio-economic and environmental reasons.

(Source: Facebook/Greener Way)

 

By Choki Wangmo | Kuensel

At the waste recovery centre in Ngabiphu, Thimphu, high and low-density polyethylene plastic is segregated amongst the heaps of waste.

A few months ago, the waste recycling plant - Greener Way, ventured beyond conventional ways of recycling; by exploring various opportunities to expand new methods to curb plastic waste challenges in town areas.

Through the modification of plastic waste by using better recycling strategies, the firm produces plastic poles for socio-economic and environmental reasons.

Making good use of plastic waste

The founder of Greener Way, Karma Yonten said that the increasing volume of plastic waste generated in the capital, Thimphu encouraged him to create value out of waste.

 

Source: Youtube/Pascale Sury

 

“We cannot control plastic waste. Even if the ban on single-use carry bags is enforced, people still use different types of plastic for packaging.”

The plastic poles will replace the wooden poles used for electric fencing to reduce pressure on forest resources, Karma Yonten said.

According to him, the current practice of electric fencing did not succeed because the wooden poles got damaged.

“Plastic poles can last for about 15 years. It need not be changed and can withstand mesh and barbed wires.”

Recently, the plant also produced reflective poles that can be used as road markers along highways.

Depending on the shape and size of the poles, 3-12 kg of plastic waste is used for producing a single pole.

Process of making plastic poles explained

Once the high and low-density polyethylene plastic waste is segregated and washed, they are heated and solidified in an agglomerator. The solidified plastic is then mixed, extruded and made to cool.

 

Source: Facebook/Greener Way

 

Karma Yonten explained that machines in the plant were used for making plastic granules, which was unsuitable for manufacturing poles.  

“Modifying inputs in our machines and considering the experience we have in waste recovery, we can recover all types of plastic waste.”

Looking ahead, Greener Way has plans to import plastic waste from neighbouring districts and to produce plastic furniture in order to reduce the challenges of managing plastic waste in the country.

 

This article first appeared in Kuensel and has been edited for Daily Bhutan.

 


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